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Pioneer Players to present The Crucible Nov. 1923
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The UW–Platteville’s Department of Performing and Visual Arts-Theatre and Pioneer Players will continue the 2014–15 production season with Arthur Miller’s classic drama “The Crucible” in the Center for the Arts Theatre.

Performances will be held Wednesday, Nov. 19 through Saturday, Nov. 22 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 23 at 2 p.m. The Benefit Wednesday performance will be Nov. 19 at 7:30 p.m. All tickets for the benefit are $6, and the proceeds will go to the Platteville Food Pantry and Southwest Wisconsin’s Family Connections.

The play premiered in New York in January 1953 and went on to win the Tony Award for Best Play later that year. The drama focuses on a young farmer, John Proctor, his wife, Elizabeth, and a young servant girl, Abigail Williams, who maliciously accuses Proctor’s wife of witchcraft. Proctor confronts Abigail in court, trying to force her to admit the lie, but instead of saving his wife, finds himself accused of witchcraft and later condemned along with many of his friends in Salem.

“Arthur Miller, the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright of ‘Death of a Salesman,’ used the context of the Puritans’ purge of witchcraft in Salem in 1692 as a modern morality play, an allegory of another dark period in our country’s history — the McCarthy hearings of the early 1950s,” said Dr. David Schuler, associate professor of theatre at UW–Platteville and director of the play. “On one level, ‘The Crucible’ is a classic revenge tragedy. On another level, it is a play about the dire repercussions of lies. As a moralist, Miller believed that theatre should confront contemporary social problems. It comes as no surprise, then, that he focuses on the blind intolerances of a society using trumped up hysteria and witch-hunting to condemn innocent people by guilt through association.”

“Called a ‘powerful drama’ and ‘strongly written’ by the New York critics, ‘The Crucible’ is a play of tremendous passion, compassion and power, befitting its status as an American classic.”

The cast features UW–Platteville students Emma Wilson as Abigail Williams, Nicholas Varela as John Proctor, Rachael Lester as Elizabeth Proctor, Elliott Frieden as Deputy Governor Danforth, Mitchell Losey as Reverend Hale and Hailey Bradshaw as Mary Warren.

The rest of the ensemble includes Mary Bade, Sunshine Balch, Emily Cooksey, Nathan Kirschbaum, Paul Krombos, Rachel Kulack, Ben Lewis, Sarah McCraw, Dakota Methvin, Viviana Pereyra, Gage Risen, Noah Thomas, Dakota Vaassen and Chirissa Zirbel. Theatre majors Grayson Basina and Danny McMullen serve as the stage manager and lighting designer.

The theatre program’s resident costume designer, Sarah Strange, created the costumes Jeffrey Strange, assistant professor of theatre at UW–Platteville, is the scenic designer.

Tickets for the production are $11 for general admission, $10 for faculty/staff/seniors and $6 for students. All tickets include the additional $1 per ticket transaction fee instituted this year. For tickets and information call the University Box Office, 342-1298.